To those that suffer in silence

Getting mental health support from others has been life changing for me and I really appreciate it. I think I get so much support because I am willing to be open and outspoken about my own struggles and I encourage others. But what makes me sad is there are others who much worse off than me. people whose depression is so bad that they can’t get out of my bed and they have the inability to express themselves in a way that they can be understood. They suffer in silence and they don’t get support because no one knows they’re suffering and they are in so much pain. Some end up taking their lives because they have been holding to this hurt for so long and have no one to turn to when they need someone to talk to. At the end of the day, they need the most support and yet they don’t receive it. It’s the paradox of desperately needing help but not knowing how to reach out; therefore help doesn’t arrive. It really hurts to think about those people

Today was a better day

I am now making it a priority to write in blog everyday because I really feel this is going to help me. Thank you everyone for all your support, sometimes I can come off bitter when I am struggling.  I think sometimes when I am depressed, I want help but at the same time I don’t, I just wanted to isolate myself and be left alone, it’s a strange paradox but I think a lot of people can relate.

Anyway I woke up today and decided that I would reactivate my social media since it had been a week and while it can be frustrating, I do find the support on there to be helpful at times.  I made a post about why I left and I got so many reactions and messages, I realize that people are just caught up in their own lives ( like they should be) and I am not the center of the universe.  My depression just makes me feel I am completely alone and no one cares when I know deep down inside that it’s a lie. On the contrary, people said they missed me and were concerned.  Since I post so much, a sudden silence, makes  people worried about what happened to me.  I want to help others and if I choose to stay silent about mental health that I am not helping anyone, in fact I am hurting myself by removing the support I need.  I think what hurt me the most was that someone messaged me about doing a suicide prevention live broadcast and they never got back to me. My brother took his life and his death anniversary is in less than a month, that really hurts.  I sent this person a smart message thanking them so much “for caring” and cut ties with them. Luckily I don’t know this person personally, so it isn’t much of a loss,  I don’t just like to be fucked  with when it comes to suicide prevention or mental health, I take it VERY seriously.   But I don’t want to let negative people disrupt positive reactions with others, I won’t throw the baby out with the bath water, you know.

I also was talking with a few people and decided to start a Facebook group that will discuss mental health advocacy, encourage others, talk about resources for help and maybe do some Facebook lives, I am really excited.  I am recruiting others that want to help me, those that have supported me on my mental health journey and I have already have 2 or 3 people that are willing to help, this is really exciting.  In fact if anyone is interested in joining my group, I’ll get you updated and post the link.

And I am so grateful and fortunate because while I say I don’t get much support, it’s not true.  Its the anxiety talking and it is such bullshit.  To be honest I think I get a lot more support than some others do probably because I’m willing to be so open and honest and share my life so publicly. There are so many others who are worse off than me, who reach out and receive no support, online or otherwise. It really hurts me to think about it.  I can’t tell you how many messages I’ve gotten from those suffering from depression that feel totally alone and have been told to snap out of it, I am lucky that no one has ever treated me that.  My perception about others see me is totally warped, so it’s all internal, it has nothing to do with anything people have said or done ( Beside a few, most people are really positive).  But I guess that’s depression, isn’t it?  And sometimes I may come off as ungrateful for the support I get, I am sorry.    I am just happy I have a place to share my feelings and I get feedback, not everyone has the ability to express themselves and be understood and when they do, they get no feedback and it’s heartbreaking.  I’m sort of rambling, so I’ll end it here.  Thank you

Dave

I’m struggling

So right now I am really struggling, no I’m falling apart actually.  I haven’t worked in months, I had to drop out of the one class that is keeping me from graduating from college and I feel unmotivated and hopeless. I haven’t been this consistently depressed in quite a long time, it reminds me of the days when I used to stay up all night and sleep all day because I was totally manic.  And to make matters worse, aside from my family, I have very little support, no friends, no one to call, no one to hang with except for the disabled ministry and I like being around them but it’s not a social group per se, although I had lunch with one of the disabled adults and his mom earlier this week and it was nice, it brightened my day. That being said I am still struggling and I have been writing less and I just don’t feel right.

Its almost 2 am and I am up and I went to the only place I know gives me comfort, my blog.  And even that feels like has dropped in terms of likes or comments, maybe it’s because I haven’t been active. But it sucks and it leads me to my next point. Last week I grew increasingly frustrated with trying to seek mental health support through social media.  I had added all of these people and for the first few days I was getting tons of support and messages and it felt like I had finally been understood and I was discussing mental health advocacy and doing FB lives and getting praise left and right, it was an amazing feeling. About a week later, my reactions dropped from about 150 likes on a few posts to 15 to 20, considering I have 4500 friends, that is ridiculous because I am trying to advocate for mental health and no one is listening.  I grew bitter and anxious so I deactivated all of my social media accounts. It has been a week now and I thought I would feel better but I feel worse. Yes, I was addicted to social media like most people but here’s the thing, it seems to be my only source of support from peers. And I used it because in real life I’m not connected to anyone and for first time in my life I felt like somebody, you know. And within days that was taken away from me.  I don’t if it’s because Facebook is terrible or people just stopped paying attention to what I had to say, but it hurt so I left.

The one thing I have noticed since I left is that I am fuckin lonely and totally isolated, aside from talking to my parents and the disabled ministry, using social media was an escape and it masked the fact that at the end of the day I was completely alone and that in real life, most people don’t care. And yeah, I feel bitter and sad. I even thought about taking a break from blogging but I think I need it right now. I need to get my feelings out somehow. Loneliness encompasses me on some days and I didn’t notice it because I have done everything I can not to think about it.  And I have a feeling this post, much like my posts on facebook, will be ignored as well because it’s too damn long and no one ever takes the time to really and comprehend what I have to say. It is what it is. I just need to get off this my chest. If you did read it and can relate, leave a comment or something so I know you’re here and you’re listening otherwise move on to the next post like you usually do.

Thanks,

Dave

 

 

 

Unplugging from a digital world

I need unplug from this digital whirlwind and get back to living, I need to feel the warmth of the sun of my back, the wind tickling my skin, the sound of the birds provide the soundtrack, this music makes my heart skip a beat, the grass and sky with highlighted greens and blues, nature in rich technicolor. Feeling closer to God, he provides simplicity and helps me quiet my mind from the chaotic thoughts and constant worries. Here we talk, he listens, I feel at peace. God’s presence calms me and as I write this, I feel the wind blow as if he’s comforting me or just letting know he’s here. Just some thoughts as I unplug, get back to nature and take some time to talk to God today.

 

Note- I also added my second Podcast during my nature walk.  Please take a listen.

 

https://anchor.fm/revolutionary-musings/episodes/Unplugging-from-a-digital-world-e3ghb1/a-abvhdh

 

 

 

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My first Podcast

I have been doing videos and FB lives for some time now.  Someone told me that they thought that I had a nice voice that I should also do podcasting. I decided to take their suggestion and make a podcast about mental health advocacy. I was a little nervous to do itbut a lot of my followers have given me the confidence to go ahead and do it.  I actually think it turned out quite nicely, please take a listen, it’s pretty short, only about 5 minutes.  I am excited about reaching more people with my message.  Here is the Podcast I just made, it’s introduction, saying a little bit about who I am what I’m about.  Enjoy!

 

https://anchor.fm/revolutionary-musings/episodes/Introduction-Podcast-e3g6ue/a-abueke

Mental health advocacy

Mental health and disability advocacy is so important. We have to speak out for those who can’t speak for themselves. I know so many out there are made to feel inferior, they are isolated and they feel alone. I’m here to say that you are not alone, you are loved, people care, there is hope and never be afraid to ask for help

 

Why are men afraid to talk about mental health?

Today I made another video. I’m taking some time to talk about the stigma of men and mental health. It’s time we as men are more open about struggles with mental health, stop shaming men who talk about mental illness openly, as males we should support one another not tell other guys to “man up”. I call this suicide prevention because the suicide is high among men, mostly due to stigma. I am hoping to connect with other men on social media who are willing to advocate for mental health and spread awareness because some days I feel like I’m the only one speaking out.

 

Bipolar

I talk light years a minute; leaving the listener struggling to get a word edgewise.  My thoughts are at lightening speed and so is my speech; just a stream of incoherent thoughts that come out so jumbled; I can’t even understand them at times. It’s the brain’s wiring that’s frayed and the distortion is loud; a large unnerving humming sound that is constant.  My highs are up to the moon and my lows are farther than the deepest oceans.  I try to keep up but my own mind leaves me exhausted; unable to keep up with these highs and lows.   It’s a prison of the mind and no one understands;  so you stay silent because it scares them; it scares me; to not know what’s happening in my own head and not having control.  I just want you to know that it doesn’t define me; I am not my disorder and you don’t need to be scared; I’m fine; it’s my mind that isn’t.

 

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Two sides of me

The person I am on the inside doesn’t always match the person I am on the outside. I call that inner voice my writer’s side; I always come up with the right words and know what to say; I connect with others in meaningful way; I speak and people seem to listen; I feel understood for the first time in my life; it feels incredible beyond belief.  I am a different person when I type; I feel confident, sure of myself; I have the confidence to express my deep feelings without regret; I am not afraid to appear vulnerable and instead of mockery; I get empathy; it feels so good that I am able to have that same compassion and acceptance of others; a truly positive way of being.

The outward side of me is like night and day; I don’t have that same confidence; I never know what to say; I stumble over my words; when I speak, I feel misunderstood; the thoughts make sense in my head but I can never find a way to convey them out loud; so, I recoil and head to the corner of the room.  I am terrified of appearing vulnerable in real life; so, I keep my feelings to myself. And when I have expressed my feelings I either get blank stares or mockery it hurts. Sometimes I just want to avoid people all together.  People might tell me in person; I love your writing; I don’t how to react and I want to tell them “Don’t expect me to be the same person in real life” I’m shy and awkward and I hate myself in person; I wish I could be the same person outwardly as my writing side. I wish I could be that confident; I wish I could be the person you think I am through my writing but I can’t. It makes me feel lonely. Sorry if you’re disappointed.

How I have grown as a writer

I just finished backing up my blog; it took a long time and I finally got it done.   For the last year or so; I have been working on my old computer and I don’t have Word on it; so, everything was saved to my blog only and I was really concerned about losing everything. I finally managed to buy a new laptop for Christmas and was determined to get everything safe; in case (God forbid) something happened to my blog and I lost all of my writings; that would have been heartbreaking.  So right now, I am relieved to have everything saved; safe and sound.

As I was saving my writings, I noticed that I have written a whole lot since I started my blog in October 2017 (has it been that long?); 530 posts to be exact.  I sometimes would make 2 or 3 posts in a day; I had a lot to say; a lot of personal pain and memories I needed to get out; it was therapeutic.  My early writings are short but potent and raw, honest; full of anger, extreme sadness and a need to be understood.  It was the first time I had ever written these feelings and certainly the first time sharing them with an audience; I was risking being vulnerable and feared being judged about my posts; I wrote quite a few posts about the anxiety of sharing my writings online. I had been judged all my life and put down and wasn’t sure how people would react to my posts; I was surprised at the positive reactions I got; I didn’t expect it at first.  I was just happy people were reading my posts and could relate to them.

 

I look back at those writings and although I’m proud of all my posts; I can’t help feel somewhat embarrassed at my early writings. I hadn’t found my voice as a writer yet and while I was honest; I spoke about my feelings in metaphors. I wrote a poem about River Phoenix that was really about my brother that passed; I couldn’t bare to write how I felt about his death; I wasn’t ready yet. When talking about my anxieties about women; I wrote a poem about traffic lights and mixed signals; it’s a great poem but it wasn’t until I made posts about how exactly I was feeling (without the metaphors) could I really reach my audience in a major way.  So, while I wrote poetry; I also had raw honest posts about the death of my brother, childhood memories, my issues with mental health and disabilities. The more I wrote; the more confident I became; I stopped caring how my audience would react and just started writing from my heart. As I scrolled up; my blog posts got much better (in my opinion) I found better ways of articulating my feelings; my posts because longer and expressive and I could write about a different range of topics; with an air of confidence that I didn’t have in the beginning.

I learned a lot about myself in reading my posts throughout my writing journey; I see myself as a different person now; the writing helped me make sense of the past and cope with the present. It hurts to read some of those posts; some of the most painful things I have ever written and it was in public no less.  Sometimes I see a post and it makes me want to cry; other times I smile at my accomplishments and other times admittedly; I cringe.  I saw I’m proud but some posts I made were cliched and amateur but that’s how you get better, right?

I hope this past inspires new writers not to give up; to keep writing and to be honest; to grow as writers.   My tip is to write for yourself and hope it reaches someone; if you write (like I did in the beginning) and worry what others will think; your write will come across as authentic and the best writing is real; so be real; be yourself and keep posting; even if it’s multiple times a day.

So now I can sit back and relax; proud of this blog and grateful for all the amazing support of my followers; you guys have been amazing. I have had nothing but positivity on this blog (with some rare exceptions) and I appreciate all of you; your comments make the difference and give me the confidence and the privilege to call myself a writer. Thank for taking this journey with and will continue to blog for many years to come.

 

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